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Why Governor Elechi Ran Into Trouble –Dep. Governor

By IGNATIUS OKPARA, Abakaliki – Engineer Dave Umahi, the Deputy Governor and gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ebonyi state, has attributed the political crisis currently rocking the state on the refusal of his principal, Governor Martin Elechi to fulfill the promise of handing over to him (Umahi) at the expiration of his eight years tenure in office.

He however, told his boss to leave out the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Chief Anyim Pius Anyim, the ministerial nominee from the state, Engr Fidelis Nwankwo and former Minister of Culture and Tourism, Amb Frank Ogbuewu from his current political travails.

Addressing newsmen weekend in Abakaliki, in reaction to Governor Elechi’s state broadcast and interactive session with journalists on Friday, Umahi, though was not mentioned by Elechi throughout his presentation, said he was compelled to respond because of twisted facts as they pertain the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and failed efforts at destroying three of their illustrious sons, Anyim, Nwankwo and Ogbuewu.

The state House of Assembly had on Friday passed a motion to serve Governor Elechi an impeachment notice for alleged gross misconduct.

Governor Elechi had on the same day accused Secretary to government of the federation SGF, Chief Anyim, Deputy National Chairman of PDP, Uche Secondus and National Publicity Secretary of the party, Olisa Metu of masterminding the impeachment plot against him.

The governor also alleged that despite being chairman of President Goodluck Jonathan’s campaign committee in Ebonyi state, he was sidelined and N80 million paid into the personal account of the deputy chairman of the campaign committee, Amb Obguewu, which he was yet to account for.

He also alleged that Engr Fidelis Nwankwo, who left the PDP for the defunct All Peoples Party (APP) where he contested senatorial election and unleashed mayhem on PDP members in 2011, was yet to be formally re-admitted into PDP, yet he was recommended for nomination as minister without the governor’s knowledge.

But Umahi, dismissed allegations that he was disobedient and disrespectful to his boss, who had anointed another person, former Minister of Health, Prof Onyebuchi Chukwu to succeed him as against him (Umahi).

The Deputy governor, insisted that his decision to run for governorship was anchored on two main pillars- the supreme pillar, Devine and the other pillar, the word of honour given to him by his boss.

He said having made enormous sacrifice to the party and Elechi’s administration it will be wrong to push him out when it is time to “chop”.

Umahi, also contended that it was not true that the crisis of confidence started the moment former state chairman of the party, Prince Ugorji Ama Oti “resigned” his position on October 20, 2014 as alleged by his boss.

He alleged that the genesis of the crisis was that at some point in 2013, Governor Elechi started reneging on his promise to hand over to him (Umahi) as successor, hence everybody deemed to be close to him were hounded, including former PDP chairman, Ama Oti who was allegedly forced to resign.

Umahi said that Governor Elechi deliberately allowed some of his confidants including his wife, son, the PDP youth leader, Chinedu Ogah and the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Chief Celestine Nwali to run the show including the affairs of the party, hence they single handedly appointed Dr. Ben Akpa as Acting Chairman of the party instead of the deputy chairman, Joseph Onwe.

He claimed that the crisis of confidence continued throughout the PDP primaries where Governor Elechi allegedly tried but failed to manipulate delegate list and eventually the primaries did not favour him and his supporters, leading to their decamping to the Labour Party (LP).

Umahi also accused Governor Elechi of using the Commissioner for Economic Empowerment, Chief James Aroh Nweke to make Anyim uncomfortable in his Ivo local government area of the state.

He pointed out that when the National Working Committee NWC of the PDP noticed what was happening in the state, they advised Gov Elechi to toe the path of peace, consultation and constitutionality.


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